Oklahoma edges Alabama for No. 1 in Associated Press poll
Being voted pre-season No. 1 is a tradition at Oklahoma, and this season is no different. The Sooners will start out top-ranked in The Associated Press college football poll for the 10th time, more than any program in the country.
The defending Big 12 champions received 36 of 60 first-place votes and 1,464 points in the Top 25 released Saturday.
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Auburn, last season's national champion, will start the season No. 23, one spot behind where it began in 2010.
No. 2 Alabama, one of a record eight Southeastern Conference teams in the pre-season poll, wasn't far behind Oklahoma, receiving 17 first-place votes and 1,439 points.
The SEC has won five straight BCS title games and has plenty of candidates to make it six. LSU (No. 4), South Carolina (No. 12), Arkansas (No. 15), Georgia (No. 19), Mississippi State (No. 20) and Florida (No. 22) were also in the rankings.
High school football
Paris stops its 22-game losing streak
A long losing streak had to come to an end when Paris and host Jackson County squared off in the Daniel Boone Bowl. It just took an extra day to do so. The game between Paris, which had lost 22 straight, and Jackson County, which had lost its last 20, was postponed for a day because of a lightning storm.
Paris was the team to snap its streak when Jalen Walton scored on a 1-yard run with 3:21 to play, sending the Greyhounds to a 36-29 victory. Walton finished with three touchdowns and 184 yards on 20 carries.
Jackson County, now on a 21-game skid, drove the ball to the 8-yard line, but a fumble by quarterback Ben Bays with five seconds left sealed the win for Paris. Bays had done nearly all of the scoring for his team, though. He took a fumble for a 57-yard TD for the game's first score, and he had three TD runs.
Jude adds 308 yards to rushing total
Johnson Central senior tailback J.J. Jude ran for 308 yards and six touchdowns on nine carries in the Golden Eagles' 48-7 victory against visiting Heath. Jude has 5,822 career rushing yards and is in pursuit of Derek Homer's state record of 8,224. Jude's scores covered 65, 37, 18, 70, 15 and 66 yards.
■ Kameron Schwartz threw a pair of touchdown passes and Bryson Thompson ran for 79 yards and one score in host Boone County's 28-7 victory against Southwestern.
U.S. loses to Lithuania in quarterfinals
Kentucky senior Darius Miller scored one point and had four rebounds in the United States' 76-74 quarterfinal loss to Lithuania at the World University Games on Saturday in Shenzhen, China. Plagued by ice-cold shooting, the Americans shot 0-for-14 from three-point range in the second half.
After battling back from as many as eight points down in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 74-74 with just under two minutes left, the U.S. missed its last five shot attempts and Lithuania sank two free throws to get the win.
The U.S. will play Romania (3-3) at 8:30 a.m. EST on Sunday with the winner advancing to the fifth-place game.
2nd straight road course win for Ambrose
Circuit Gilles Villeneuve owed Marcos Ambrose a victory and finally paid up. The Australian had led more laps than any other driver in the first four editions of Montreal's NASCAR Nationwide event and he finally cashed in Saturday, taking the lead on a restart with nine laps to go and holding off crowd favorite Alex Tagliani to take the checkered flag in the NAPA Auto Parts 200.
Ambrose had started at the back because he missed the pre-race drivers meeting for the NASCAR Nationwide event. Then he survived a collision with 1997 Formula One champion Jacques Villeneuve halfway through the race that knocked him back to 28th place.
"I feel like I passed 400 cars out there," Ambrose said. "I finally got to the front when it counted. I've come close here. I've led more laps than anyone, but today I was able to close the deal."
Ambrose's first Nationwide win of the year came on the heels of his first Sprint Cup victory, Monday at Watkins Glen.
Tagliani crossed 1.112 seconds back and Michael McDowell was third, Steve Wallace fourth and J.R. Fitzpatrick fifth. Danica Patrick finished 24th in her first NASCAR road race.
What is expected to be the final career race for Canada's Patrick Carpentier ended when he was bumped off the track and out of the race by Wallace while challenging near the front with nine laps to go. He climbed onto some scaffolding at trackside and watched the race play out.
"I'm amazed a guy like Wallace has a full-time ride," Carpentier said. "It's like sometimes he spaces out. I've never said this before, but I think the guy is an idiot. But what can you do?"
Wallace apologized for the incident in a post-race TV interview, but Carpentier said: "He needs to apologize every race. His sponsor should be called My Apology."
Couples in front at Senior Players
Fred Couples shot a 3-under 68 on Saturday in Harrison, N.Y., to take a one-stroke lead after the third round of the Senior Players Championship, the Champions Tour's final major of the season.
Couples is at 11-under 202 for the tournament and is trying for his first Champions Tour title since a seven-stroke victory last October at the Adminstaff Small Business Classic in Texas. Since his fourth victory on the senior tour, Couples has struggled with his back, but the injury has healed following a non-traditional procedure in Germany six weeks ago.
Peter Senior remained in second at 10 under after a third-round 68 and was tied with John Cook, who moved up from fourth with a 66. Corey Pavin was fourth at 8 under after shooting a 69.
■ Webb Simpson shot a 6-under 64 on Saturday to move to 15-under 195 and take a two-stroke lead after three rounds at the Wyndham Championship in Greensboro, N.C.
■ First-round leader Patrick Wilkes-Krier shot a 5-under 67 in the third round of the Hooters Tour's Mississippi Gulf Coast Golf Classic to move back in front in Pass Christian, Miss. Shelbyville's Brandon Brown, who shot a 62 Friday to move into the lead, is one shot behind.
Murray, Djokovic reach Cincinnati finals
Andy Murray survived enough break points to set up a tournament title match against the world's top player. The Scotsman overcame a pair of break points late in the second set, then another in the tiebreaker, beating American Mardy Fish 6-3, 7-6 (8) Saturday and advancing to the finals at the Western & Southern Open near Cincinnati. He'll play No. 1 Novak Djokovic, who advanced when Tomas Berdych withdrew from their semifinals because of a shoulder injury. Murray will be trying for only his second tournament win this season, to go with his title at the Queen's Club in June.
The last word
Looks like one college football program might be scandal-proof. Marc Lillibridge, who played linebacker from 1992 to 1994, tweeted:
"When I played at Iowa State we were so bad the football players had to pay the boosters to show up for games."